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OFX vs. TransferWise
Save on fees by discovering which service works better for your money transfer needs
Both OFX and TransferWise are great services that can transfer your money overseas. With competitive fees and stellar customer service, it can be difficult to choose between them. However, not everything about these companies is on equal par, and which is better for you may depend on your circumstances. We’ll discuss the differences to help you understand whether OFX or TransferWise is the right choice for your next money transfer.
Compare OFX to TransferWise
Whether OFX or TransferWise is better for you depends on the unique needs of your cash transfer. For quick comparison between these money transfer services, enter the amount you want to send, your country’s currency and your recipient’s currency.
How they work?
For TransferWise, you go to its site, select the currencies you are exchanging and indicate how much you want to send. After reviewing your rate and fee, money is pulled from your bank account and matched to a sender.
Who offers lower fees?
OFX charges no transfer fees when sending $1,000 or more around the world.
With TransferWise, fees depend on where and how you’re sending money. They range from 0.55% to 2.35% of your transaction — and sometimes a bit higher, plus a fixed fee depending on the currency you’re transferring to. To send $1,000 to China, you’ll pay 1.1% of your transaction (or $12) plus a fixed fee of $8; to the Philippines, the fee drops to 0.75% ($7.50) plus a fixed fee of $3.50. You can easily find out what you’ll pay by visiting its “How much does TransferWise cost?” page.
TransferWise’s fees are among the lowest in the industry. But OFX’s transparency and $0 fees for all transfers make it the clear winner.
Who offers better exchange rates?
A typical exchange rate at OFX is about 0.4% above the mid-market rate — a competitive rate any way you look at it.
So if you need to send $1,000 to the Philippines:
- If the mid-market rate is 1 USD = 49.74 PHP
- OFX’s exchange rate could be 1 USD = 48.88 PHP
Exchange rates is where TransferWise shines. It’s one of the only money transfer services that offers you the mid-market rate. So if you’re sending $1,000 to the Philippines and the mid-market rate is 1 USD = 0.82 EUR, that’s the rate you’re going to get.
Though OFX and TransferWise offer similar competitive rates, there’s no denying the power of paying the mid-market rate.
Case Study: Sending $1,000 to Mexico
Say you want to send $1,000 to buy office equipment for a business expansion in Mexico City. Here’s what an online bank-to-bank transfer would look like with OFX and TransferWise.
|Exchange rate||1 USD = 21.525 MXN||1 USD = 21.529 MXN|
|Transfer speed||Up to 4 business days (1–2 to OFX, 1–2 to recipient)||1–4 days|
|Total received||21,525 MXN||21,352 MXN|
This one is a close call. While you could shave some time off the transfer speed with TransferWise, you save nearly $10 on the transfer fee alone by going with OFX. The difference between exchange rates, however, is too minimal to weigh.
Send money internationally with TransferWise
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
- Fair service fees and mid-market rates – a major market differentiator
- Next-day delivery for most currencies
- Easy-to-use app
To transfer your money to OFX, it takes one to two business days. It takes another one to two days to send that money from OFX to your recipient. You’re looking at least two business days to complete a transaction from send to receipt.
Depending on the currencies involved and your payment method, it could take up to four business days for your recipient to see your cash.
Your average transfer may take about the same time with both services.
Who offers more options?
|Payment Methods||Minimum and maximum transfers||Delivery methods||Transfer speeds||Countries and currencies|
|OFX||Electronic funds transfer (EFT)||$1,000 minimum per year; no maximum||Bank transfer||1–2 business days to transfer to OFX; 1–2 business days to transfer to recipient||195 countries and 55 currencies (exclusions include Afghanistan, Cuba, Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Libya and Syria)|
|TransferWise||Bank account||$1 minimum; $36,000 maximum||Bank account||1–4 days||Nearly 40 currencies|
When it comes to international money transfers, both OFX and TransferWise are forces to be reckoned with. It’s too close to call which is better for your situation. Ultimately, you’ll need to weigh your specific details or compare further options to find the service that’s right for you.
Frequently asked questions
Does either OFX or TransferWise offer cash pickups?
If you follow the law and submit your legal documentation timely and accurately, you shouldn’t experience hassles with the IRS. If you choose not to follow the law, you may be on the hook for stiff penalties, including jail time.
Who offers better customer service: OFX or TransferWise?
OFX customer service is open 24/7 at 1-888-288-7354. If you have more time, you can use its online contact form.
TransferWise is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. EST at 1-888-908-3833. For faster service, search its online support center.
Can I get a more favorable exchange rate for my transfer?
Yes. Both OFX and TransferWise give you the chance to wait for a more favorable exchange rate if you are transferring money to another currency. By locking in your preferred rate, you can exchange money when the rate is more favorable.
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